April 14, 2024

Building Advanced Operations

Crafting Success, Building Futures

Foley excels in fiscal management annual audit reveals

GCM Staff Report

The City of Foley has once again demonstrated exemplary management of municipal funds and transparent fiscal operations, as highlighted in its annual financial audit.

The audit, conducted by the firm of Warren Averett, awarded Foley an unmodified opinion, the highest level of assurance attainable. According to company officials, the report revealed no significant adjustments or instances of non-compliance.

Mayor Ralph Hellmich commended the dedication of Foley staff members and Warren Averett employees, emphasizing the extensive hours invested in preparing the audit.

“It’s a lot of work,” Hellmich said. “People don’t realize that. We’re very progressive. The City Council and everyone here do a lot of things with a lot of different funds and utilize a lot of techniques in order to provide services. And it’s complicated. So thank all of y’all. We appreciate that.”

Hellmich praised city employees, including Cian Harrison, Executive Director of General Government Administration; Miranda Bell, Director of Financial Services; and Sue Steigerwald, recently retired Financial Services Director, for upholding Foley’s high standards of accountability.

“The accountability here in Foley is held to a very high standard,” Hellmich said. “Cian has a lot of experience in all of this and her department and Miranda, our chief financial officer, just do outstanding work in carrying on the tradition that Sue started.”

In the fiscal year under review, Foley received revenues exceeding $83.45 million, with expenses totaling nearly $56.6 million. The General Fund reported operating revenues surpassing operating expenditures by over $22.81 million, contributing to a combined ending fund balance of $94.5 million for the city’s governmental funds—an increase of almost $33.72 million from the previous year.

Bell noted Foley’s consistent recognition by the Government Finance Officers Association of the United States and Canada (GFOA), including the distinguished Public Award Presentation for its 2024 budget. Foley has received this award at least five times, along with the popular Annual Financial Reporting Award four times and the Annual Comprehensive Financial Report Award 10 times. Foley has achieved the “triple crown” in financial reporting—receiving all three awards in the same year—four times.

Looking ahead, Bell expressed optimism about Foley’s prospects for additional accolades and another “triple crown” in the forthcoming 2024 assessment.